Istanbul: the sound of the Muscle.
At the beginning, our eyes are closed, listening to the sound of a control at the customs, the city, the calls to pray, the traffic, the trains, the bells… And with this exercise of proactive listening we get started on the work with the audiovisual artist Filastine in Istanbul, inside a room with warm wooden floors within the cozy and inspiring ‘Simotas Binasi’, the base of the European Souvenirs team in its stage at the Old Constantinople.
The prominent sounds of the city emerge, not only when it’s time to look to the Qibla and the muezzins appear to be competing with each other. Istanbul sounds in its cars, its ships, its tourists and inhabitants. Sure that in other cities, sounds are equally powerful and ever-present, but in Istanbul they vibrate around you as well as within you, for whoever wants to listen and loose themselves.
During the days working at Simotas, we would go out recording these sounds and buying percussion instruments. Then, we gathered all this and thought of the soundtrack for our live cinema show. Music was present while working all throughout the comforting jam sessions with the material supplied by the archives. First, with Grey Filastine’s help -who also delighted us with a magnificent showcase of his last album with the awe-inspiring background of Fatih Sultan Mehmet’s bridge, which links Europe and Asia- and later, with the team work, where we started exercising the muscles, the sound, getting them ready to the flow of the live show.
Bones and Muscle: building stories.
This task led us to over three days of narrative games, writing the story separately, analysing keywords, using exquisite corpses… And these conversations brought up the main subjects, for now, of our own cosmogony. The basis of a multiple, fragmented, domestic story. These being: Family, Travel, Borders, Utopia vs. Dystopia and Memories.
Ingredients of a multimedia stew which five artists will have to cook together, although coming from different realities, in different places and with different thinking.
So, how to cook it all at once? How to serve it on the table? What about the technique?
In the middle of this debate, always unfinished but quite advanced, we left Istanbul, satisfied with the good work and looking forward to Warsaw, our next stop. Meanwhile, we will work far away from each other, but still being able, if we close our eyes, to hear the sound of that muscle that joins Europe and Asia… in Istanbul.
Pedro Jiménez & Malaventura.